Saturday, July 21, 2007

Day 9 6/11/07


10:00 British Library

We just returned home from the British Library for lunch and I was really impressed with all it had to offer. A typography professor from Central St. Martins gave us a quick tour of the library and then we attended an exhibit entitled “Sacred” within the library gallery. Attending this exhibit was a pleasant surprise for me. The show was about the three religions Christianity, Judaism, and Islam and did a really good job summing up the origins of these three religions while showing their strong relations to one another. The old scrolls, texts and prayer books written in Hebrew mainly captivated my attention. Having studied Hebrew for many years it was really fascinating to be able to read these ancient texts. The craft of the writing was unreal to me how precise and neat these scribes could continuously write.
In addition, I was very interested in the space design of the exhibit, along with the audio architecture. Pentagram introduced this term to me the other day. I never really thought about how much goes into designing the audio for a space but it actually is a full on profession. It definitely interests me seeing that I have always had a passion for playing and writing music and recently have begun to incorporate it in my design work. I was also really interested in how the artist set up the space in “Sacred” with numerous soft, and sheer curtains to divide up the space, but also with intentions to project beautiful abstract images to further add to the soft ambiance and calming mood of the room.

Day 9 6/11/07

Day 8 6/10/07

Free Day

Today is our second free day and unfortunately we all have seemed to of come down with something. Last night we all went to the world famous Ministry of Sound night club. It was definately an experience; however, a one time experience for me. Not really my scene, but I am glad we all went together. A group of us left the open till 7 am club around 3:00 am (which was actually early) and ended up getting home after the second group because we took the bus in the wrong direction for 30 minutes and walking home from the bus stop in the mear daylight was definately an experience as well.

Anyways today we are all sick with some sort of cold, but regardless, I decided I needed to get out and do something on my own so this afternoon I went to Hyde Park. The park is the biggest in London, by the river and has plenty of paths to walk on and many beautiful flower gardens. I am glad I got away today and has some "me time."

Day 7 6/9/07

10:00 am
Design Museum

Today was an amazing day. We started off our day late to the design museum because three tube lines were shut down; however, it all worked out perfectly because as it turns out the designer featured in the special exhibit we were planning on attending arrived at the museum right before we did to have lunch in the cafe and to sketch out his new ideas. Bill being the charmer he is approached the world famous designer, Luigi Colani, introduced himself, and asked if he would being willing to talk with us briefly. It turns out that Colani ended up walking us around the whole exhibit of his work and spoke to us about every piece featured. He was extremely friendly and gave us over an hour long indepth tour of the exhibit explaining his process behind every piece. This designer has got to be super human for designing and creating all these spectacular ground-breaking products, and vehicles. Responsible for redesigning products such as the canon camera to military airplanes Colani has applied elements seen in nature especially sea animals to his designs making him the leading inventor of biodesign.

12:00 pm
Lunch at Borough Market

After the Design Museum Bill gave us all 5 pounds to spend at Borough Market for lunch. Borough Market was a food lovers heaven and definately the best outdoor space I have been in yet. Borough Market features hundreds of venders selling home-made delicious foods and drinks native to the area as well as from areas all throughout Europe.

2:00 pm
Tate Modern

After Borough Market we walked along the river to the Tate Modern, which was the biggest museum I have ever seen. It was quite intimidating/overwhelming especially after such a loaded day; however the girls and I enjoyed the Dali and the Helio Oiticica exhibit, then rested on the couch with Bill for about an hour before heading home.

Day 6 6/8/07

2:30 am
Bus pick up for Stonehenge

4:30 am
Arrive at Stonehenge

This mornings visit to Stoneghenge was amazing. I didn't get any sleep before the bus arrived at 2:30 am to pick us up for the Stonehenge sunrise, but it didn't bother me. Jill and I instead, stayed up and talked for hours. It was quite relaxing actually, and this way I was able to sleep on the bus the whole ride there. We finally arrived at Stonehenge at 4:30 am and were able to enter the gates at 5:00 am. The whole experience was so surreal. I felt so honored not only to be in the England countryside experiencing such ancient history, but to be able to enter beyond the usually blocked off area and touch the stones for myself. We didn't see much of a sunrise due to all the fog, but I didn't care. The fog gave the stones a nostalgic feel, which was just as beautiful. I will never forget these moments.

12:00 pm
Tower of London

Today was our first free day so a bunch of us girls took advantage of this time and went to the Tower of London. We had a great tour guide who was animated, witty and very knowledgable about London's royalty history and the history of the castles. Apparently, all the tour guides are led by men who have some lineage to London royalty and have served over 20 years as a London beafeaters, or guards, which I found very interesting. They all live in one of the towers as well which is even more cool. As the tour came to a wrap and opened up for questions, Alicia raised her hand and asked our tour guide if he was married. It was cute. We then all posed for a picture with our friendly tour guide and were on our way.

Day 5 6/7/07

10:00 am
British Museum

Today we started the day off by meeting at the British Museum. When we all arrived we walked in together to look at to Rosetta Stone by which I was amazed with how intact and unweathered it was. We then had time to go off and explore the Museum on our own. A bunch of us spent time looking at the exhibit on the history of coinage and currency and we were able to handle some of the oldest coins in the world.

1:30 pm
Greyworld visit

This afternoons visit to Greyworld was definately one of the most inspiring visits yet. Greyworld is a firm made up of only three young designers; yet their go getter attitude and belief that producing any creative idea they think of is possible, if you work hard at it, made me feel as if I could fly to the moon. Greyworld mainly produces urban installations in public places for the publics pure entertainment, but they made it big with their Bia project made up of rising balls on cables in the London stock exchange. Since so many of Greyworlds projects require a great amount of engineering work, I figured they all must have some sort of engineering background. However; what I found most inspiring about these three people is that none of them have an engineerng background at all, and they dont let this stop them from carrying out the creative projects they think of. Instead they make an effort to find the right people to help them, which often at times are engineers, tired of their repetitive schedule and thrilled to take part in one of Greyworld creative projects.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Day 4 6/6/07

10:00 am

Today we attended the much anticipated visit to the design firm Pentagram. A woman named Debbie spoke to us about how the firm is set up and run.

Pentagram was started in 1962 by Alan Fletcher and 3 others. It is such a desirable firm to work for not only because they have done consistant amazing design work for numerous big name clients, but because of the companies socialist and capitalist model. Their exists no titles behind employees at the firm, there is no home office and no "head guy." The whole firm was set up and is run by designers there are no business men etc, due to the fact that the designers want to talk directly to their clients, not through someone else. All partners of pentagram make the same salary as well making the company very collaberative.

Pentagram does work from brand identity to packaging, product design to signage, architecture and interiors and their clients have included Saks Fifth Avenue, Nike, and Tiffany and Co. My favorite client of their; however, is the London based food company named EAT. Pentagram designed everything for this company from their branding and packaging to their restaurant/store interior. I have appreciated EAT in london not only for their fresh tasting food but for the fresh, clean and organized design of their small markets throughout the city.

3:00 pm
Saatchi and Saatchi

Today we got the priveledge to talk to Kate Sanders, the creative director at Saatchi and Saatchi. It was really nice to be able to see and hear a female creative director for a large and successfull advertising firm speak about advertising. I was especially excited to listen to a female who is young, hip, optimistic and almost unfazed by the hardships of being a woman in advertising.

Their reel was the best advertising portfolio I have seen thus far in London, but I especially appreciated their Carlsberg viral ad and all their social cause advertising, specifically their ad for NSPCC an organization set out to stop child abuse. Saatchi and Saatchi seems fairly loyal to creating advertiments for NSPCC and social cause organizations in general, and I really respect them for that.

Day 3 6/5/07

10:00 am
Trend Forcasting Methodologies
Trend Union

Today we visited a trend forcasting firm named Trend Union which creates trend books for a range of clients in the fashion and textile industry, and in the fields of architecture, automotive, cosmetics and interiors. A man named Phillip spoke to us about how the company was started and where their inspiration originates. In the end of the presentation he showed us a reel or a visual and audio version of their trend book for winter 2009.

Phillip stated that all trends have an origin and that their trends are inspired by the publics needs and desires. However, I am more likely to believe that Trend Union sets the styles and trends then uses their books and reels as a sort of way to brainwash their clients and then the public into believing their is reasoning behind these new trends; that the new colors, patterns, textures etc have become trendy by the public for rational, yet subconcious reasons.

I found it interesting yet scary how much power this one firm has. I was shocked to learn that even small companies like frozen food companies will question trend union on what flavors, colors, and foods people are going to desire in the next year.

I guess somebody needs to set the trends. I just wish Trend Union wouldn't try so hard to reason the trends they set when in reality its all just superficial.

3:30 pm
BBH (Bartle Bogle Hagerty)
Later today we visited BBH an advertising firm located in a really nice, higher class, part of the city a few blocks from the Oxford Circus tube stop. A young creative team just a few years out of college that works for the firm talked to us about their process in making commercials and about advertising in London in general. I was interested to learn that most design and advertising students are hired out of college in teams, and that most students team up by their senior year, generally one student taking on the more creative end of the bussiness and the other working more as a copywriter. BBH in particular is a firm made up of 25 teams of 2.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Day 2 6/4/07

10:00 am
Orientation at the Delaware Center in London

1:00 pm
Surrealist Exhibit at the V&A
Great exhibit! I was unaware that surrealism and surrealist artists in general took on so many various art forms and mediums. Dalis jewelry was beautiful, extremely intricut, yet racey (especially the starfish).
I was unaware Max Ernst had an alter ego which came through in much of his work and I found very interesting. My favorite piece of his was definately the bed he designed and constucted to trigger your dreams and subconcious. It looked very magical and almost surreal do to its massive and elaborate structure and frame. I wanted to lie in it and test it out.

3:00 pm talk with the guys from NB studio about V&A catalogue design
It was real cool to see the design process between these three men in creating the new V&A catalogue and their concept for the cover design. At the end of the talk they showed us their whole portoflio of some of their other work. I thought it was pretty solid and I appreciated their respect of typography breaking it down to being simply about clarity and simplicity.

Day 1-London Arrival 6/3/07

Arrive at flats 10:00 am

Well we are finally here. All our travels went very smoothly and we are all anxious to explore the city.
Our flats are absolutely amazing. Located on 31 Southampton row right in the center of this bustling city in the financial district, we are a block away from the central line tube stop named Holborn. I know I will not be living in such a luxurious place like this for a long time or maybe ever again. We have the whole fifth floor to ourselves and are above an office building. The flats appear brand new, clean and have 3 beautiful balconies.

We all want to explore the city but are all so tired. However there is plenty of time and so much to look forward to in the next 5 weeks.

Rachel is teaching me all the differences in language such as
water closet=bathroom

One thing I have realized today is how amazingly clean and organized everything is here such as the tube, grocerie stores and their coinage system. It's all very easy to adjust to.